Crescent School (Toronto)

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Crescent School
Crescent School Front.jpg
Coordinates43°43′57″N 79°22′45″W / 43.732499°N 79.379218°W / 43.732499; -79.379218Coordinates: 43°43′57″N 79°22′45″W / 43.732499°N 79.379218°W / 43.732499; -79.379218
MottoVeritate Stamus Et Crescimus
HeadmasterMichael Fellin
Campus30 acres
Endowment$12.5 Million

Crescent School is an independent elementary and secondary boys school in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. It teaches boys from Grades 3 to 12. Established in 1913 by John William James, the school was situated in several locations in its early years. In 1933, Susan Denton Massey, the aunt of Governor General Vincent Massey, gifted land to the school, making its expansion possible.[1]


Crescent School was founded in September 1913 by its first headmaster, John William James, known as "Jimmy" to his friends. He opened his school to a group of boys at his home at 43 Rosedale Road. The school experienced many changes and financial difficulties in its early days, however the school persisted and became a leader in Canadian boys education. The school moved to its current location on the former Frank P. Wood estate in 1970.

In 2014, Sylvia Duckworth, a teacher at Crescent School, was awarded a National Certificate of Excellence in Prime Minister's Awards for Teaching Excellence.[2]

In 2015, David Grant, a teacher at Crescent School, was awarded a Certificate of Achievement in the Prime Minister's Awards for Teaching Excellence.[3]

In 2017, Michael Jansen, a teacher at Crescent School, was awarded the Chemical Institute of Canada's Beaumier Award for High School/CÉGEP Chemistry Teachers.[4] In 2018, Michael Jansen was presented with a Certificate of Achievement in the Prime Minister's Awards for Teaching Excellence.[5]

House System[edit]

Each student at Crescent is a member of one of six Houses. Each House is named after a notable figure in Canadian history. Each House is governed by a head House Captain in the Upper School, while each grade appoints their own captains. The six Houses (and their colours) are:[6]

  • Cartier (grey)
  • Hudson (yellow)
  • Mackenzie (light blue)
  • Massey (dark blue)
  • Simcoe (purple)
  • Wolfe (red)

The Houses compete for points which culminate in a year-end award to whichever House has the most points. The House system is an integral part of Crescent life, and it dates back to the early years of Crescent's history. The original two Houses were named the Greens and Greys.


Field House In 2002, Crescent opened the "Field House", a 30,000-square-foot space (the size of three average gymnasiums) is used for tennis, basketball, indoor track and ball hockey. This replaced the three outdoor tennis courts that had been situated there before.

Centre for Creative Learning In 2004, the Centre for Creative Learning opened, featuring a professionally equipped, 350-seat theatre, meeting rooms and a reception area.

Innes Field In 2008, an artificial turf surface, called Innes Field, opened. it replaced the previous grass playing fields.

Lau Family Wing In 2011, Crescent opened the Lau Family Wing, an addition adjacent to the existing Centre for Creative Learning (CCL). The building was named in honour of Ming Wai Lau (Class of 1997),[7] and the Joseph Lau Luen Hung Family Charitable Trust, the main benefactors. Most Middle School classes, as well as some Upper School classes, are held in the Lau Family Wing.

Latifi Family Commons In September 2014, the Latifi Family Commons, a $3 million (CDN) facility housing Crescent programs including University Counselling and Crescent Student Services, was opened. It is named for Michael and Marilena Latifi, who are parents of Crescent School students.

Libraries The Margaret Donnelly Library, which opened in 2012, is used by boys in Grades 3 to 6. The Middle School/Upper School Library, which opened in 2014, is designed for older boys.


Crescent Rugby.jpg

Crescent teams include basketball, hockey, baseball, track and field, rugby, volleyball, badminton, tennis, swimming, soccer, cross country running, squash, golf and Ultimate Frisbee. The school has a longstanding record of success in both CISAA[8] and OFSAA.[9]

In the 1920s and 1930s, the Crescent School held athletic events with other private and independent schools in the Greater Toronto Area. These events were often reported on in the Globe & Mail newspaper; the soccer match between the Crescent School and Appleby College held on November 30, 1937 ended in a tie.[10] During this interwar era, the School held an annual boxing tournament with, "...Parents, Old Boys and friends of the School..." invited to attend.[11] In addition to boxing, soccer, and cricket, the School also held an "annual aquatic gala" where prizes were given to the best boys.[12]

Co-curricular programs[edit]


Since 2000, Crescent has been involved with the FIRST Robotics Competition FIRST Robotics,[13][14] an international competition in which professionals and high school students are teamed together to solve an engineering design problem in an intense yet cooperative way. In 2003, the Crescent FIRST Robotics Team won the regional Chairman's Award in recognition of the contribution it has made to the field of Robotics. In 2011, Crescent's Team 610, placed second in both the Waterloo and Greater Toronto Area and placed fifth at the World Championship in St. Louis. Crescent has also participated in another competition, RoboFest. In 2013, Crescent placed first at the BAE Systems Granite State competition. In the same year, the team went on to become the 2013 FIRST Robotics World Champions. In 2017, Crescent placed second at the FIRST Robotics World Championships, after ranking as the top team in Ontario.


Crescent's Outreach program emphasizes local, national and international opportunities that take an experiential learning and community service approach. Crescent School students can participate in outreach projects in Toronto and around the world. Examples include a tutoring program where Crescent students in Grades 7-12 tutor students at Toronto elementary schools; volunteering with community service organizations and participating in charity events. In 2015/2016, Crescent School partnered with Havergal College to form the Dignity For All program; the program raised over $50,000 in support of the Syrian Refugee Crisis. Outreach trips are offered each year for Upper School students. During the 2013/2014 school year, Crescent students participated in trips to Nicaragua, Tanzania, India, South Africa and Cambodia. In 2016/2017, outreach trips went to Tanzania and to northern Ontario.

Business Team

The Crescent School Business Team focuses on increasing Upper School students' knowledge of business beyond what is taught within the classroom. The team also strives to provide life skills experience such as collaboration, competition, sportsmanship, leadership, problem solving and perseverance.

Business Team members compete at DECA, a student business competition targeting students from Grade 9 to 12. It prepares students for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality, management and entrepreneurship. Crescent School competes at the regional and provincial level of DECA, and placed in the top 10 for nine years running. Eight students qualified for DECA Internationals in 2015, and another six qualified for Internationals in 2016.

Case Competitions target students who are looking to excel beyond DECA with university-style and -level cases. Crescent School also hosts its own case competitions. It has been running for over five years, with over nine participating independent schools. Four additional competition dates occur throughout the year.

The Business Team's Investment Team is a student-run and led, real-money investment portfolio started in 2012. The team currently manages over $40,000. Students are responsible for developing the portfolio's overall strategy, performing fundamental research and valuation analysis, assessing and recommending investments, presenting to the Investment Team for approval and ultimately presenting to the Investment Committee (a panel of one or more adults from the industry). The Investment Team is continuing to grow its capital base through the generosity of past, current and future parents. It has published reports (Weekly Economic Report, The Update and Bi-Weekly Digest) on its performance.

The Junior Business Club introduces Grade 9 and 10 students to investing, DECA and presentation skills.


Here is the estimated student intake by grade [15] for the school year:

  • Grade 3: 32 new students are accepted
  • Grade 4: 4-6 new students are accepted
  • Grade 5: 20-24 new students are accepted
  • Grade 6: 0-5 new students are accepted
  • Grade 7: 20 new students are accepted
  • Grade 8: 0-5 new students are accepted
  • Grade 9: 15-20 new students are accepted
  • Grade 10: Entry Varies
  • Grade 11: Entry Varies

For the 2016/2017 school year, tuition fees were $31,750 per year. For the 2017/2018 school year, tuition was $32,350. For the 2018/2019 school year, tuition is $33,250. Tuition covers the cost of most academic activities.[16]

University placement[edit]

Graduates of Crescent School attend universities in Canada, with many students pursuing higher education in the United States and the United Kingdom. From 2004-2014, the most popular Canadian university destinations for graduates in Canada were the University of Western Ontario (25 in 2014), Queen's University (22 in 2014) and the University of Waterloo (5 in 2014). Outside of Canada, graduates have gone on to study at Harvard University, Stanford University, Cambridge University, Oxford University, and the London School of Economics, among others.

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2010-08-28. Retrieved 2010-10-31.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ "Sylvia Duckworth". Government of Canada. October 7, 2014.
  3. ^ "David Grant". Government of Canada. 2015.
  4. ^ "Beaumier Award for High School/CÉGEP Chemistry Teachers". Chemical Institute of Canada.
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ The Globe & Mail. December 2, 1937, Page 14
  11. ^ The Globe & Mail. June 1, 1934, Page 10
  12. ^ The Globe & Mail. June 16, 1937, Page 19
  13. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2010-12-25. Retrieved 2012-08-19.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  14. ^
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  16. ^
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Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]